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code of conduct (plural codes of conduct)

  1. (ethics) A set of rules dictating acceptable behaviour and decisions in a specified environment.
    • 1901, Harold Fielding, The Hearts of Men[1]:
      What use have I ever had from this religion that has been dinned into me? It gave me false ideas of the world and nature which I have had to unlearn. It gave me an unworkable code of conduct which I never tried to follow, but I got into trouble for it.
    • 1906 May–October, Jack London, chapter VI, in White Fang, New York, N.Y.: The Macmillan Company; London: Macmillan & Co., published October 1906, →OCLC, part 4 (The Superior Gods):
      In spite of the maturity of his years and of the savage rigidity of the mould that had formed him, his nature was undergoing an expansion. There was a burgeoning within him of strange feelings and unwonted impulses. His old code of conduct was changing.
    • 1916, Sax Rohmer [pseudonym; A. H. Ward], chapter XXXII, in The Return of Dr. Fu-Manchu[2]:
      That iron-bound code of conduct which rules the Anglo-Indian, in the first days of the voyage had threatened to ostracize Karamaneh and Aziz, by reason of the Eastern blood to which their brilliant but peculiar type of beauty bore witness.
    • 2005 November 2, “Blunkett quits after ‘mistakes’”, in BBC News[3]:
      Mr Blunkett quit after breaking the ministerial code of conduct over paid work he took while out of the Cabinet. John Hutton is to replace him.
    • 2007 April 9, Brad Stone, “Bloggers debate need for code of conduct”, in The International Herald Tribune[4]:
      The conversational free-for-all on the Internet known as the blogosphere can be a prickly and unpleasant place. Now, a few prominent figures in high technology are proposing a blogger code of conduct to clean up the quality of online discourse.
    • 2017 October 27, Sopan Deb, “Motion Picture Academy Moves to Institute Code of Conduct”, in The New York Times[5], →ISSN:
      Nodding to critics who contend that the movie industry hasn’t done enough to fight sexual harassment, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced on Thursday that it would be establishing a “code of conduct” for its members.

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